The canopy arching the booths at the Sirhaul toll plaza, which is being dismantled, was removed on Tuesday. The first phase of dismantling of the toll plaza will be completed by April 10, the concessionaire Millennium City Expressways Pvt Ltd (MCEPL) said. The process of removing the toll plaza began in March.
Skylark Securitas is dismantling the toll plaza. The initial plan was to raze the concrete structures first — two toll booths at a time on each side. “The canopy was to be removed last. This was because, we had worked on a feasibility report that this canopy could be converted into a foot overbridge. But the plan did not materialise,” MCEPL CEO Raghuraman said.
After April 10, the pillars will be removed. “We will remove these pillars in the second stage. By then, we will have a plan to mobilise traffic better. Also, now these pillars act as lanes for traffic coming from Delhi,” he said.
In the final stage, likely to be completed by May 10, all the sub-structures will be removed. According to the concessionaire, any structure below the road level like underpass will be removed in the final stage.
The dismantling of the toll plaza, which will bring relief to over three lakh commuters, is costing the concessionaire around Rs 53 lakh.
But the traffic police are not very happy as it has become a nightmare for commuters, particularly those travelling from Delhi towards Gurgaon. “Long queues can be seen from Rajokri to the toll plaza, the Udyog Vihar U-turn and Cyber Hub during morning hours,” a traffic police officer said.
The MCEPL has also been ordered by the National Highways Authority of India to return the tags of people who have already bought it.
According to sources, the concessionaire has been asked to give Rs 700 per toll tag.
But the concessionaire said it was under no legal obligation to do so. “Under the agreement signed when we took over from DGSCL, the third-party rights still belong to them. So, everything related to taxes, payments and any outstanding expenditure is DGSCL’s liability. The MCEPL has only the government liability,” Raghuraman said.